Millions of Americans are in some sort of trouble with the IRS, whether it’s due to back taxes, errors in calculations, or accumulating penalties and fines. Tax resolution professionals are experienced in working with both taxpayers and the IRS to come to some kind of agreement so that both sides are satisfied. As a result, the market for tax resolution services has grown dramatically.
In fact, according to the IRS, there were approximately 128 million returns filed with additional tax due in 2018. Additionally, there were many thousands of open collection cases with the IRS. Even if only 10% of these cases required the services of a tax resolution expert, the results are a billion-dollar industry that continues to be underserved. In other words, currently there is more demand for tax resolution work than there are professionals to provide it.
If you have added tax resolution services to your tax firm, you’ll want to make sure that your potential clients know who you are and what you can do for them with the IRS. Here are four ways to get more tax resolution clients and build up your practice for year-round work.
Get free access to a lead list
County tax liens are publicly available upon request and are an excellent source of tax resolution leads. A tax lien guarantees a financial obligation as imposed by law upon a property to ensure the payment of taxes. When someone fails to pay income taxes, for example, they may get a tax lien on their property. The list of county tax liens becomes a timely lead list for your business as it puts you directly in contact with those who may desperately need your services.
You can send direct mail, emails, or make phone calls to the people on the list. You should introduce them to your business and outline how you can help them with tax relief. When you demonstrate that you have valuable information to offer and are willing to share it with them, it builds trust between you. Potential clients who feel desperate and afraid of their tax situation should see you as a trustworthy tax resolution professional.
Use your built-in network for referral business
To bring your tax resolution services to the attention of a wide range of potential clients, reach out to your existing business network. Referrals are some of the most effective marketing methods for finding new clients, so take advantage of the network you’ve built to enhance your business. You’ll want to build awareness that your practice has started offering tax resolution services and you can do this in several ways.
The first group to connect with is other business owners and professionals in similar industries. From real estate agents and bankers to other financial providers, these are the businesses that will be able to provide referrals to people who are seeking a tax resolution professional . You can also volunteer to speak at community events centering on taxes and other financial topics to build your presence in the business community. Of course, always ask for referrals from those businesses that know about their client’s financial situation and may need tax resolution expertise.
It’s also important to let your current clients know about your firm’s new services as well. Clients who come to you for basic tax preparation and other financial services you offer may be interested to know about your additional services. Word-of-mouth is an excellent tax resolution marketing strategy. Even if they don’t need the tax resolution services themselves, they may know someone within their friends or family who do.
Follow up with inquiries and referrals
One common mistake that tax professionals make is only checking in with leads and referrals once. Too often, they figure that if someone wasn’t initially interested in tax resolution services, they never will be. The reality is that people and circumstances change, and someone’s situation may lead them to your door. If an individual has expressed interest in your services, but you haven’t heard from him or her in a while, send a follow-up email to touch base. A friendly reminder may be all the potential client needs to take you up on your services.
Develop an online presence
Everyone knows the importance that social media plays in marketing efforts of a small business. Tax accounting firms are no different, especially when you are rolling out a new service like tax resolution that is in high demand. Develop a dynamic and impactful online presence with an updated website, full of helpful information that presents valuable content. Don’t spend your time promoting your company alone—instead, provide quality information that potential clients will use.
On all your online platforms you should include pertinent information about your business that would make it easy for a potential client to get in touch with you. Include your practice phone number and email address or physical address. Be sure to indicate which hours your practice is open so that clients know when to expect to be able to talk with you. Include enough information for a client to be interested in asking for further information about your services.
It’s also a good idea to put any and all referral options online to boost your presence there. Add your practice to Yelp and other directories and review sites for quality reviews of your business. The more positive reviews you have, the more you’ll be viewed as a reputable choice. Develop an incentive program that encourages satisfied clients to leave a good review online.
Want more expert advice for attracting tax resolution clients? Check out Canopy CEO Kurt Avarell's secrets for converting a tax resolution lead to a client.